Grahame Whitfield BSc Hons (Surrey), MSc (City)

School of Health and Related Research
Regent Court
30 Regent Street
Sheffield S1 4DA

ScHARR section: Public Health
email :
Office: 0114 222 0700 (07941 389065)


I started my PhD in the Public Health section of ScHARR at the University of Sheffield in June 2013. I am being funded under the NIHR SPHR programme.

Previously, I have worked as a policy researcher/analyst in the Department for Work and Pensions and Department for Education - and as a research programme manager at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. I have also worked as an active researcher at the National Centre for Social Research and Centre for Research in Social Policy. I have worked on a broad range of policy areas using a range of innovative methods (quantitative and qualitative).

My main interest has long been in the development of a robust and comprehensive evidence base on the position, experiences and aspirations of disabled people and people with long-standing health conditions (including children, adults, their families and carers).

Research Interests

My PhD is focussing on the delivery of Personal Health Budgets in the UK for older disabled people. Whilst there is some evidence that shows PHBs have had a positive impact on peoples’ social care outcomes, it is less certain whether this has also been the case in terms of health outcomes. One area of concern is that of perception of risk – where (i) people are making choices about their support packages in the context of being fearful of changing to a new service provider or of making changes to the way in which they are supported and (ii) professionals/service providers make decisions about what they believe is in peoples’ best interests (often with good intent) and do not provide the full range of options for people, thus limiting the choice and control available to them. Developing an understanding of this issue – and of the negotiations between ‘service users’ and ‘service providers’ - may help the future delivery of PHBs and contribute towards ensuring people are able to make more informed decisions about the support they receive and improve their health outcomes.

Teaching Interests

I am not currently teaching, but am keen to become involved in teaching research methods and in areas of social policy relating to inequality and disability.


• Prof E Goyder
• Dr S Barnes


‘About Me’ website